The notion of êthos is productive to study the construction of the discursive identity of groups understudied from a rhetorical perspective. One such group is the intelligence agents who created archives of repression in Latin American dictatorships during the 20th century. Legal and illegal repressive forces produced these archives, which became declassified when the region was democratized. In this talk, I focus on the archive of the Intelligence Directorate of the Police of the Province of Buenos Aires (DIPBA), an organization that was created in 1956 and dissolved in 1998. I characterize the êthos as an expert êthos since the agents portray themselves as professionals with specialized knowledge. I analyze how this portrayal is configured in the metaphor of the DIPBA as a factory and a company. Likewise, I consider the writing norms of the intelligence report genre.
Dr. María Alejandra Vitale, Professor of Semiology at the University of Buenos Aires and researcher at the Institute of Linguistics of the same University. She directs a research project, funded by the University of Buenos Aires, which studies declassified archives of repression in Argentina using a rhetorical-discursive perspective. She is the director of the Repression Archives Research Group (GIAR) at the University of Buenos Aires: https://grupoinvestigacionarchivosdelarepresion.wordpress.com